First Drone Delivery of Medicine to Residential Customer

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UPS and CVS teamed up for the first medical deliveries via drone to residential customers.

UPS Teams Up With CVS

TechCrunch reports UPS and CVS Deliver Prescription Medicine Via Drone to US Residential Customers for the First Time.

UPS is rolling along with its drone delivery program, working with partner CVS Pharmacy to deliver prescription drugs to customer doorsteps via its newly deployed commercial drones. UPS delivered medications to two paying customers on November 1 using the Matternet M2 drone system that the logistics company is using in partnership with Matternet ..

UPS received approval last month from the FAA to fly its fleet of commercial drones in service of customers, and now it plans to iterate its drone delivery program “in the coming months,” with the aim of ensuring that it can deploy UAVs in a commercial capacity at increasing scale. It also launched “UPS Flight Forward,” a dedicated division focused on autonomous drone delivery.

This isn’t the first time UPS has deployed drones in a healthcare industry setting: The company has been working with Mattternet and WakeMed Hospital in Raleigh, doing commercial deliveries of medical samples in a B2B setting.

Drone History

Reuters comments on Drone History

Flight Forward’s maiden delivery flight on Friday in Cary, North Carolina, beat rivals in one phase of the race for the nascent market. The second drone flight delivered medications to a public space at a retirement community.

The packages, roughly the size of small shoeboxes, were lowered from drones hovering at an altitude of about 20 feet.

Wing, a drone operator owned by Google parent Alphabet Inc, is partnering with Walgreens and FedEx Corp for a home delivery pilot in Christiansburg, Virginia.

Helathcare Delivered

Pizza Coming Up

Drone delivery is ahead of where I expected things to be. Pizza deliveries coming up.

Competition is good.

Mike "Mish" Shedlock

Comments (34)
No. 1-12
Stuki
Stuki

Nice! Congrats to UPS and Matternet.

While medicine delivery may be the killer app for this, there is a virtually unlimited number of applications for very low latency delivery of small packages. Even P2P: "Junior forgot his lunchbox or ballet shoes or keys" type things.

LB412
LB412

Drones are banned in our city, including for commercial use.

Blurtman
Blurtman

Next up, delivery of fentanyl and crystal meth.

JonSellers
JonSellers

Well, I guess it will at least force the obese off their couches to walk to the front door to pick up their diabetes drugs.

Freebees2me
Freebees2me

I just can't imagine how 'pranksters' won't see these things as excellent objects for target practice or interdiction of some type. How long will it be before they're shooting down or intentionally deviated for the contents? Software programs that allow a person from the comfort of their easy chair to use local radar to go after these devices from hundreds of miles away. This will be like a live video game....

Don't think it'll happen?

Well, think about a text messaging system where one would call a third party, tell the third party the message (and be charged by the letter). The third party would then deliver that message on a piece of paper to the intended recipient. Few people could imagine the text messaging system we have now....

BTW, for you youngsters, it's called a telegram....

xardoz
xardoz

So when will we see some sort of airspace coordinated control over these cities? Will it just be an extension of the nearest FAA controlled airport? I can't imagine a cloud of these going about their deliveries without some sort of centralized coordinated control.....UPS.FEDEX,DHL,WALMART,CVS,WALGREENS,AMAZON, Pizza Hut, Dominos, etc... and assume there will be more than one aircraft for each doing simultaneous deliveries into low altitude spaces.

Herkie
Herkie

Have any of you ever actually heard a drone? They sound exactly like a gigantic swarm of Africanized bees which no matter how you think you can control it invokes the Fight/Flight response on a survival level in the human brain.

And these things are going to be EVERYWHERE in 5 years, you will never be able to get away from them. Aside from the question, how to keep drugs delivered (as well as anything actually) out of the hands of curious kids and meth addicted homeless people, we have a lot of those here, and they will steal absolutely anything. Ever seen a pet chew open a plastic drug bottle? So long Fido. As to how it could deliver to many homes where access to a porch is either blocked or no porch exists in the first place, and the question I want to ask is how many billions have scientists and technicians and governments and corporations spent to misallocate all this money? Just as I will never ride in a computer driven car I will never receive a drone delivered package.

This is going to vastly lower your quality of life and there is not one single thing you can do about it because once this much money has been spent they are never going to admit it was a mistake and ban the crappy things. Just one more reason to leave.

Guinny_Ire
Guinny_Ire

Imagine a sky with 10s of 1000s of drones daily. Enjoy visiting birds at the zoo.

ksdude69
ksdude69

There are a gazillion scripts daily, among other things. Does everyone really want to see these stupid things buzzing all over the place? Screw this crap. Now what, UPS has a monopoly on this crap? Let me guess, it's the same price as having someone drive it to you? Someone should open a drone rental/service and cut UPS out of it. I can see it now, your scripts have an "electrical surcharge". Call me old fashioned, but I dont want to see the skyline loaded with this crap and thank god they cant reach my area yet. I'm cant wait to hear stories about ghetto chicken hunting. When they find out theres crap flying overhead its game on. Esp if they are stupid enough to send pain pills.

xardoz
xardoz

In the end I don't think this will be a thing as the complexity of managing the airspace with all those deliveries of "individual" packages will be too much. OTOH Driverless UPS/FEDEX/FOOD trucks that pull up to the closest curbside and send you a text to come get you stuff from the truck via a door on the side that you put a code in from the txt message like the amazon lockers but on wheels. I can see that being a bit more realizable and cost effective as it eliminates the local driver labor costs and they can run late and on weekends/holidays.

Lighthouse
Lighthouse

Drone test flight successfully delivers drugs in Canada for 1st time. Drone flew 11k from London Drugs, Duncan BC to a rural customer on Salt Spring Island. CBC News August 29, 2019